Monday, December 21, 2015

Making the Most of Winter Break

Hi everyone and Happy Winter Break for all of your who are off from college and from high school! When I was in high school, these were my favorite two weeks of the entire year because I could read a book and spend time with my family, and practice my dance routines in my down time without having the responsibility of a summer job or homework to do! Even now that I am on break from graduate school, I use this time to make new memories with all of my family and do projects I don't normally have time for! So, today I wanted to share some tips with you all on how to make the most of your time off from school this Winter!

READ A BOOK - This one is rather obvious, reading a book is important for growing your vocabulary and your general knowledge on a topic. Whether it be a self-help book, one about your career, or a magazine that you love to read cover-to-cover, then use this time to expand your mind and soak up new knowledge!

VOLUNTEER - We are in the season of giving now, so make sure you give up some of your time to help others. You can do something simple for a day like help at a soup kitchen or helping to organize the food pantry at a church in your area. You could also offer to read books to children at the local library! If it snows a lot where you live, shovel off your neighbor's driveway or walkway! It doesn't need to be some outland-ish Habitat for Humanity type of volunteering, but just giving a little bit of help and cheer to someone can go a long way for their happiness!

BUY YOUR TEXTBOOKS - If you are in college, buy your textbooks before Christmas, sometimes they offer pretty good shipping deals just because of the time of year. What's important though is to price compare your textbooks at different websites. I always price compare between my University Bookstore, Amazon, and Chegg to make sure I am not paying more than I need to for a specific book! BTW: Chegg is offering free shipping on orders over $85 until March 31st, so be sure to check that out to help save some money!! Also, if you buy your textbooks from your University Bookstore, don't pay the extra money to have them shipped home or to your off-campus apartment. Just go and pick them up on the first day of classes!

BINGE-WATCH TV - Take some time to relax and watch your favorite tv show while you can! Find a show or mini-series you've been waiting to see and lock yourself in your room with your puppy dog or kitty and watch it continuously! It will give your brain a break after final exams or large projects! I don't have NETFLIX (which is probably a good thing) but I usually will binge-watch Youtube videos or old tv shows that I have on DVD for a brain break!

WRITE YOUR RESUME - Use this time off to re-write and re-work your resume for on-campus jobs, possible internships, and if you're getting ready to graduate for your first big-kid job! You can find great pointers on the internet and if you are in college, use your Career Services Office to review it for any errors in writing or in presentation! You'll be happy to have one all ready to go when next semester gets busy and some leadership and internship opportunities come up!

SPEND TIME WITH FAMILY - This is also a no-brainer, but spend your time off with your family; your parents, siblings, grand-parents, aunts or uncles, or cousins. Try and see everyone at least once while you are home and you don't have to worry about projects, athletic events, or going out with friends. You will cherish this time, so make sure you spend it with the people you love!

MAKE STUDY CARDS - This is obviously the 'nerdy' option, but if you have a big exam that you will be taking in the spring or in the summer coming up, use this time to make some flash cards with key vocabulary that is needed for performing well on these exams. This is a rather brain-less task, its just copying words and their definition on a note card, so you could even do this while catching up on those tv shows. You can Google Search SAT Vocabulary or GRE Vocabulary or whatever exam you are taking to find words to make flash cards out of. While you're in the car riding to different family gatherings, you can take those twenty minutes and review some vocabulary with those flash cards!

Winter Break is a short break but that's what makes it great! You are able to rest and relax with your family, while doing productive tasks for the next semester! If you have some fun things you are doing this Winter Break to help you chase college, feel free to add them in the comments or tweet me @Chasing_College.

Later on this week, I will be posting about making the decision to transfer out of a college, if you're in those shoes, as well as, a movie or book marathon for all of the College Chasers out there! Have a great week everyone!

enjoy the chase,

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